Don’t count the stairs at night
I am a staunch atheist. However, since I started studying medicine, too many incredible things have happened around me.
These things make me very conflicted. When I kept reminding myself to look at them from a materialistic perspective, I found that my mind became more and more confused. 6 years ago, I was admitted to s medical school. For me, this is not good news. I have hated the dead smell of disinfectant in the hospital since I was born. If my score in the college entrance examination was not too low, I would not come here if I was killed.
Perhaps because of my depression, I hardly interact with my classmates. I remember that there was only one friend at that time, and his name was Anzi. – That’s what I always call him. He always wears a set of sportswear that does not change throughout his adult life, with a badge of Chairman Mao on his chest. Although his dress is a bit earthy, it does not prevent us from becoming friends. Both of us are relatively introverted people, we are isolated from any cultural and sports activities, and we just stay in the lecture hall on the 5th floor to study every day. I remember back then, we were seen as nerds by everyone. Because if anyone goes to the lecture hall to study, it will be regarded as something wrong. ――Everyone usually goes to the library. Sitting in one place all day is extremely boring to me. However, I really can’t think of what else I can do. I spent most of my time looking up at the light tubes on the ceiling being blown to and fro by the wind. When I look at it like this, I always think of Galileo, who discovered the isochronism of pendulum only when he was bored. I laugh out loud when I think about it that way.
I always want to understand how Anzi can concentrate on studying like that. There was a bush outside the window of the lecture theater, and there were many birds singing on it, so he could not take a look at it. “This guy is such a nerd.” I sat behind him, looking at his back and thinking. But I’m not trying to say that Anzi is a perfect person. He has a quirk, that is, when going upstairs, he always counts the steps of each floor, one step at a time, and never falls behind. If he accidentally counted wrong, or suddenly forgot where he was, he would go back the same way, start over, and do it all over again. It now appears that An Zi obtained a “compulsory certificate” at that time. However, at the time, I was very annoyed by his behavior. Either way, it’s just too boring to do. To this day, I can still clearly recall what happened that night—everything that happened on that terrible night. Anzi and I walked on the dark stairs leading to the lecture theater, and he counted the steps as usual. Today, I’m not very annoyed,-after all, in the dark where you can’t see your fingers, if you have someone to help you count the stairs, you will feel a lot less effort. So, I also echoed the numbers in his mouth in my heart.
“4, 5,…” Anzi took every step very slowly, so I had no choice but to accompany him slowly.
“9, 10, 11,… Strange!” An Zi said suddenly.
“What’s weird?” I asked. ” Zhigang , do n’t you remember how many stairs there are on this floor when we usually go upstairs?” When going upstairs, there are always 3 steps in one step, and it seems that you can take 4 steps. “Don’t you often count and ask?” I said. “Oh, yes, it should be 12,…but, today I only counted to 11.” “Then it must be a wrong count, don’t worry about him.” “No, the stairs will not lose one level for no reason. You accompany me back to Staircase Ghost Stories , and count from the bottom.”
I was so annoyed that I really wanted to give him a mouthful. but I do not have. On such a dark staircase, there was no one. Out of my responsibility as a friend, I followed Anzi and walked back. “9, 10, 11,…” When Anzi and I reached the last step of the stairs, I suddenly felt the chill behind me, and my scalp was about to explode. Stairs! The stairs are really one step less than usual, and it has become 11! “Zhigang, you…” Before Anzi finished speaking, I guessed that he was going to tell me to go back with him and count the stairs from the beginning. In the darkness, Anzi’s expression could not be seen. I suddenly remembered the corpse in the dissection room. “No, no! I’m not going! Go yourself!” I felt my legs start to twist.
I also don’t know why I was so scared at that time, I just felt a huge fear occupying my heart, “Don’t expect me to count the damn stairs with you again!” I threw An Zi, He ran downstairs like flying. On the bed in the dormitory, I was gasping for breath, and I found that I couldn’t lie down or sit down quietly. I jumped up and walked back and forth on the ground. The people in the dormitory didn’t come back, so I turned on all the lights. It seemed that after a century, someone finally came back, so I immediately pulled them along and went to the auditorium with a flashlight to find Anzi.
We searched all the places we could look for, but couldn’t find Anzi — neither did the school staff and the police after that. ——Anzi is missing.
Three years after Yasuko disappeared, the medical school began to expand. When a huge excavator pulled down the building with the lecture theater, a pile of bones was found among the ruins of the stairs on the fourth floor. Among the bones, there is a badge of Chairman Mao.
I know, it’s An Zi. For, I have heard, that if a man finds that a step is missing when he goes upstairs, he will replace that step. Until now, I still dare not count the stairs.